Australian Hemp Sneaker Company Planting Trees

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Shoe with trees

In what it describes as a month of climate action, Blac Sneaker Company is donating funds with each hemp sneaker purchase to have trees planted on its behalf.

Relatively new on the footwear scene, Blac Sneaker Company was established in 2019 with a goal of creating simple, stylish sneakers for everyday wear that minimise environmental impact in their production.

“We believe good quality and comfortable sneakers provide the perfect balance between sustainable, durable, useable and practical,” says the company. “These elements are important when designing a shoe that has a positive impact on society whether it be through the materials used or contribution to communities.”

The sneaker upper is made from hemp and “BCI cotton”. BCI – which stands for the Better Cotton Initiative – a non-profit group promoting better standards in cotton farming in multiple countries and seeking to help cotton communities thrive while protecting and restoring the environment. 2.4 million participating farmers produced 6.2 million tonnes of Better Cotton last year, equivalent to 23% of the world’s cotton production.

As for the hemp, it’s being used in the sneakers not just for its sustainable street-cred, but for its superior strength and durability, breathability and anti-microbial attributes. You can learn more about hemp fibre here.

For every pair of Blac hemp sneakers sold throughout October, 5 trees will be planted. It doesn’t mention exactly where the trees will be, but mentions:

“Proceeds will be donated to regenerate Australia to help rebuild our habitats that have been affected by fire or other deforestation challenges.”

Purchases need to be made through the online store at blacsneakerco.com.au to qualify for this initiative.

Other sustainability initiatives undertaken by the company include generally offsetting its operations. Blac Sneaker Co. says it’s estimated the production of each pair of sneakers (generally speaking) creates 13 kilograms of carbon emissions – and to mitigate this it purchases offsets from GreenFleet, which plants native biodiverse forests in Australia and New Zealand.

It’s not clear from the company’s web site where its sneakers are produced, but reviews from customers appear to be generally favourable. In addition to Australian availability, the sneakers can also be shipped worldwide. At $119 a pair at the time of writing plus shipping, they aren’t the cheapest sneakers around – but certainly aren’t the most expensive.

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